This volume centers on the words and experiences of teachers and students who used QUILL -- a software package developed by the authors to aid in writing instruction. It looks in detail at the stories of these early users and considers questions relevant for other teachers, students, researchers, and developers of educational innovations. Questions posed include:
* What does it mean to develop an environment for literacy in an actual classroom?
* How can a teacher create an environment in which students work together toward meaningful goals?
* How can a teacher promote the rich communication so necessary for developing language?
* What is the role of technology in the practice and development of literacy?
The examination of the QUILL experiences provides a fuller and more revealing account of what it meant to use QUILL than would have been possible through standard evaluation techniques. At the same time, the focus on the particulars also finds analogues in analyses of similar pieces of open-ended software or educational innovations in general.
"This excellent book describes in detail the inauguration processes and results (realizations) of varied field testing of the Electronic Quills literacy curriculum….This scholarly work is well organized, succinctly written, and is supported by numerous tables and figures which explain the Quills program. Scholars and students will find the references current and productive. Highly recommended for acquisition by academic libraries…especially useful for professionals and for university faculty, graduate students, and scholars with special interests in curriculum development, educational innovation, and teacher education."
"…its central theses and ethnographic detail make it a worthwhile read for those interested in designing computer writing environments, especially across educational levels….well based in educational theory, but its real power resides in its anecdotes, its summaries of student and faculty exchanges, and its presentation of computer-mediated texts."
—Technical Communication Quarterly
Contents: Introduction. Contexts for Literacy Development. QUILL: A System to Support Literacy Development. The Alaskan Context. Alternate Realizations of Purposeful Writing. Revision. The Alaska QUILL Network: Fostering A Teacher Community Through Telecommunication. Situated Evaluation. Conclusion: What We Have Learned.